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Bio Briefs

Measuring the stiffness of a single living cell
Changes in the mechanical properties of biological cells, many scientists believe, are a major contributing factor to the development of bone, kidney and vascular disease.

Mending a wounded heart
Heart muscle cells grown on an elastomeric polymer scaffold, says Sabrina Jedlicka, can be integrated into existing tissue.

The mechanics of proteins
Protein molecules are made up of a linear chain of amino acids that folds into a 3-D globular form. Discovering the manner and conditions under which sections of a protein molecule unravel to reveal active sites is fundamental to understanding many biochemical processes, since these are potential binding sites for other molecules.